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Strategic system theory

Author: TuXiangYang
Tutor: DuanPeiJun
School: The Central Party School
Course: Philosophy of Science and Technology
Keywords: strategy strategic system strategic thinking open system practical reason
CLC: N94
Type: PhD thesis
Year: 2012
Downloads: 569
Quote: 0
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Abstract


Strategy is the overall and long-term calculated art and science based ontheir own and environmental situation in order to reach a certain goal in thecompetition, under the circumstance that not to undermine the environment.Strategic system is the conceptual model to analyze the strategic phenomenon,is an abstract soft system, the characteristics and structure of which is therelationship and logical structure among the strategic elements. The researchobjects of the study on strategic system are the systematic strategy or strategicsystematization, and from the traditional viewpoint of strategy, these objectsare also the systematic content. Only in the contemporary strategy theory,systematization is a primary part of the strategic content. In this sense, alongwith the richness and the dominant situation of the systematic content, it isconsidered that strategy is evolving into a mature system in the contemporary.The study on strategic systematization mainly includes three levels, the first isthe formation, development and the mature of strategic systematization, thesecond is the systematic content or the structure about the concept of strategy.The last is the relationship between strategic system and practical reason.If the evolution of the strategic system can be divided into three stages-formation, expansion and mature, the strategic thinking of ancient Greece andancient China, especially The Art of War as the representative of the strategicthinking, can be regarded as the logic origins, not to say the western strategictheory actually come from The Art of War. The reason for such profound ideain this book is due to the core concept of ancient Chinese philosophy–Dao. Ina word, the highest level of strategy is from this seamless integrity of Dao.In the time of Clausewitz and Jomini during which strategy system isinitially formed, the development of war practice made it possible toinvestigate the war in a whole point of view. They divided the art of war intotwo parts-in terms of strategy and tactics. The difference is Clausewitz planedthe tactics from a strategic perspective, but Jomini interpreted the strategyfrom the tactics and grad tactics point of view. The goal of Jomini is to build ascientific and operational system of war principles. He thought that the key ofthe art of war is to concentrate superior forces as the strategic match point, around the central goal and principle and then develop the deduction and theapplication rules accorded with the practical situation. Clausewitz indicates nodoubt that the integrity is priority to the parts. During this period, themeaning of systematicness is represented in the relationship between thewhole and the parts, but for another part of systematization, the relationshipbetween the open system and the environment is seldom discussed. AfterClausewitz and Jomini, Strategy and its systematic connotation become theimportance of the war theory study, and strategy and tactics was clearlyseparated.The expansion of strategy occurred in the time of Delbrück andLiddell·Hart. The size of warfare continued to expand; almost every part of thesocial life has been involved, and plays a decisive role in different level. Thereare two different approaches in order to make the strategy study to contain alldecisive factors. Ludendorff put forward the Total War theory-war, as thecore, deals with the live and dies of the nation. And all the resource and powershould serve the war. Meanwhile, Liddell·Hart separated the concept ofstrategy and grand strategy, and also emphasized that the politics controls thewar. We should not desperately pursue the victory of the warfare, but shouldput an eye on the overall planning for the peace period after the war. On theone hand, according to the space aspect, the theories like Sea Power, AirPower and Land Power continuously putting forward, the war becomes athree-dimensional confrontation. On the other hand, according to the timeaspect, strategies are no longer confined to the wartime, but have all thegoverning elements in all time. In the form of war, the guerrilla is closelyfocused, which essentially a contest with heterogeneous systems.The mature of strategic system occurs in the time of André Beaufre topresent. This is primarily because of human practice structure has undergonesignificant changes, the far-reaching global new system appears, which lead tothe law of social system, especially the structure status raise up, structurecomplexity and uncertainty enhanced, a new trends of social developmentformed. During this process, the internal relationship between strategic theoryand system thinking is closely focused. System analysis is widely used in thestrategic decisions in United States from1951, and then expanded to various areas like industrial producing management, economic policy, publicgovernance and etc. System analysis becomes the first choice to conductcomplex and macro problems. The mature of strategic systematization andstrategic system performs in the following aspects, firstly the strategicperspective expends from strategy to grand strategy, secondly the strategicstructure alters from military strategy to development strategy, thirdly thestrategic model develops from zero-sum game to non-zero game, fourthly thestrategic mechanism changes from being-organized to self-organizing, andfifthly the strategic advantage transforms from comparative advantage tocompetitive advantage.The systematic connotation of strategic concept or logic structure ofstrategic system contains the following aspects: firstly, strategy is theconfrontation between two systems. The internal advantage of a system, onthe one hand, is the main systematic level, on the other hand, is the separationof upper and lower members in the main system. It is so hard to reconcilethem. Secondly, the relationship, as the open system, between the strategysubject and environment is the basic framework for the strategic analysis,which means the premise of the strategy cannot make fundamentally damageto the environment. At the same time, strategy must be calculated based onthe subject, environment and their relationship, and adjusted according totheir changes. Thirdly, strategy is unity of a three-dimensional structure, interms of the utility structure between ends and means, the whole structurebetween the integrity and the parts, the development structure between thepresent and foresight. These three dimensions are unified, and constitute arelatively complete strategic phenomenon; accordingly, the strategicphenomenon is essentially a systematic phenomenon.Strategic system, as the concept model of strategic practice, has closelylogic link with practical reason. As widely known, the classification of practicalreason has different names, such as the purpose reason, the instrumentreason, the communication reason, the humanity reason and the value reasonetc., the most important ones and most mature ones in theory among whichare instrument reason and communication reason. With regard to therelationship between the strategic system and theoretical rethinking in practice, there are two points should be discussed. Firstly, the Marxist view ofpractice has the systematic connotation and system theory basis ofcommunication reason. In fact, Max Weber, the founder of instrument reason,was referred as a totally “positivism”, whose discourse is also focused on therelationship but not isolated elements. Secondly the strategic system and thetheoretical rethinking in practice in the developing process have similarcorresponding relationship. From a practice point of view, we can deeplyunderstand the internal structure and formation evolution about thecontemporary strategy theory.

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